Google Expands Its Entrepreneurial Network With Austin Incubator

By Todd R. Weiss  |  Posted 2014-05-09

Google Expands Its Entrepreneurial Network With Austin Incubator

Google's fledgling Tech Hub Network for entrepreneurial communities around the United States is growing again, as the Austin, Texas-based Capital Factory joins Google's continuing efforts to help startups by providing Google help, resources, advice and more.

The addition of the Capital Factory was announced by John Lyman, head of partnerships at Google for Entrepreneurs, in a May 6 post on the Google Official Blog. The Tech Hub Network is an initiative of the Google for Entrepreneurs program.

"Austin is home to some of the best barbecue in the country, a killer live music scene, and an energy that can match any other city in the world," wrote Lyman. "It's no coincidence, then, that it's also home to some of the most creative entrepreneurs out there, which is why we're pleased to welcome Capital Factory, an Austin-based incubator and co-working space for startups, to the Google for Entrepreneurs Tech Hub Network. The city's thriving startup community and deep bench of engineering talent, combined with its natural creativity and eclecticism, make it the perfect place to expand."

Google launched the Tech Hub Network in September 2013 to help fuel search giant's efforts in aiding entrepreneurial groups around the nation. The addition of the Capital Factory means that the Tech Hub Network, a group of partner organizations across the U.S. that are involved in activities, from hosting accelerator programs for talented developers to providing desks for entrepreneurs, has grown to eight members so far, wrote Lyman.

"Google for Entrepreneurs provides funding to all the hubs and gives them access to mentorship opportunities and Google products," he wrote.

The original seven Tech Hub Members are 1871 in Chicago;  American Underground in Durham, N.C.; Coco in Minneapolis; Communitech in Waterloo, Ontario; Galvanize in Denver; Grand Circus in Detroit; and Nashville Entrepreneur Center in Nashville, Tenn.

The efforts so far are beginning to show results in the original seven groups, wrote Lyman. "In just over six months, the Tech Hub Network is already having a dramatic effect on entrepreneurs around North America. Seventy-one percent of startups say their hub is having a significant impact on their growth, and companies from the Network have raised more than $50 million and created 1,200 jobs since becoming members. Just last month, we hosted a Demo Day for these hubs, where 10 startups raised millions of dollars to help grow their businesses."

In addition to the Capitol Factory announcement, Google unveiled a useful new perk for the members of the growing Tech Hub Network, wrote Lyman. "To give these entrepreneurs an even greater boost going forward, starting today anyone who works in one of the eight tech hubs or Google's Campus [in] London [or] Tel Aviv will be able to work for free from the other member spaces when traveling," he wrote. "This will give startups a home base when they're on the road, and the chance to spread and exchange ideas from city to city."

It wasn't so long ago, wrote Lyman, when Google itself was just a startup operating in a garage. "Now that we've grown up a bit, we want to give others a place where they can work on their ideas, and feed off each other's creativity and ingenuity," he wrote. "Capital Factory is no exception. So, get your boots on, Austin entrepreneurs—we can't wait to see how your growing startup community plays its part in keeping Austin weird."

Google Expands Its Entrepreneurial Network With Austin Incubator

Google launched its Google for Entrepreneurs project in 2012, which today supports more than 70 organizations in more than 115 countries around the world. Google was also involved in 2010 with the launch of the Startup Weekend project, which are 54-hour events where developers, designers, marketers, product managers and startup enthusiasts come together to share ideas, form teams, build products and launch fledgling startups.

In March 2014, Google announced that it is giving $1 million to 40 global organizations that work with startup companies to encourage them to find ways to bring more women into the fields of business and technology. The program, called #40 Forward, aims to increase the number of women working within the communities served by the global startup-focused organizations by 25 percent in 2014.

In October 2013, Google expanded its efforts around the world to help entrepreneurs make their ideas and dreams come to life through an increased partnership with UP Global, a nonprofit group that works to foster entrepreneurship.

Innovation is a big part of Google, based on its similar efforts to pursue new ideas and investments. In September 2013, Google got involved in the world of health care with the creation of Calico, a company that will work to find ways of improving the health and extending the lives of human beings. Calico is a startup that will focus on health and well-being, in particular the challenge of aging and associated diseases, according to the company.

Back in April 2013, Google's investment arm, Google Ventures, launched a new "Glass Collective" organization to seek out and nurture startups that can add features and capabilities to the still-nascent Google Glass project. The Glass Collective was set up to encourage and capture more of the future possibilities of Glass, according to the company.

Google Ventures was founded in 2009 as a venture capital fund that would work with portfolio companies full time on design, recruiting, marketing and engineering, according to the company. Google Ventures also includes a Startup Lab, which is a dedicated facility and educational program in which companies can meet, learn, work and share, according to the group.

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